The necessity of ‘Yes’


On this date three years ago I was home for a holiday in Ireland. I had come #HomeToVote in the same sex marriage referendum. I sprung from my bed early that Saturday morning with a feeling of trepidation. Living in the Netherlands I had been spared the toxic horror of the six month, public trial that the LGBT community had been subjected to during the campaign. Having arrived home a couple of days before the vote, I had managed to haul my bones around Limerick for a lunchtime leafleting campaign; and an evening door to door campaign. There had been a tension in the air, but nonetheless an air of cautious optimism. An unverifiable inkling that the country might be about to improve. Continue reading The necessity of ‘Yes’


The man on the bus and the unmarried Mammies

"The Home" in Tuam, Co Galway, Ireland. Pic  Tom Honan.

I am trying. Trying valiantly not to stick my ungainly hoof into other people’s business. This morning was a challenge. I have not spoken about him before but I share a bus route to work each day with a bearded gentleman of around my own age. He has always struck me as slightly odd – in both his appearance and his demeanour. The fact that he wears a wedding ring was an indication that somebody somewhere had enjoyed his company at some point – perhaps they still do. Continue reading The man on the bus and the unmarried Mammies

Theatrical: ‘Passing on’


Last night I went to see ‘Passing on’ at the Teachers’ Club – my latest excursion to the 15th International Dublin Gay Theatre Festival. This was a co-production between  the Acting Out theatre group and the Blue Heart Theatre company. Written by Sean Denyer and directed by Howard Lodge it tells the tale of a thirty-something gay couple Brian and Tom. Together for a decade they decide to venture into a brave new world – that of parenthood. Their friend Jane agrees to act as surrogate for the couple. There is a slight worry however. Having been adopted by his parents as a baby, Tom requests a background health check on his biological family –  in case of any hereditary conditions; or potential health issues that might inform the decision as to which of the couple will be the sperm donor. Continue reading Theatrical: ‘Passing on’

Theatrical: ‘The Drowning Room’


Having attended the thirty-fifth anniversary memorial to the Fairview Park March (held to protest the leniency of the sentences handed down to the killers of Declan Flynn in a brutal gay bashing in 1983  – you can read my account of the day in the linked GCN article) I was very keen to attend The Players’ Theatre in Trinity College this evening, to see the play ‘The Drowning Room’. This play is part of the ongoing 15th International Dublin Gay Theatre Festival. It tells a tale  similar to the Flynn case – but told in a fictionalised version, set in the present day. Continue reading Theatrical: ‘The Drowning Room’

Theatre times: ‘Men’s Shorts’


The May bank holiday Monday each year, sees the launch of the International Dublin Gay Theatre Festival. Now in its 15th year, there is a wide range of shows, across a number of city centre theatre venues – there will be something for everyone in the audience. It was at this festival last year that my play ‘An Unexpected Party’ had its debut in Theatre@36 in the Teachers’ Club on Parnell Square. Facebook sends me daily reminders of that amazing week last year, the time when I didn’t see my very own full length play – for the simple reason that I was also starring in it. This may sound boastful, but what of it? If I don’t blow my own trumpet, then no-one else will. As the kids say. Continue reading Theatre times: ‘Men’s Shorts’

From Sarah with love


It’s not that I am anti-social; or filled with irrational rage. It’s simply that I am extremely sensitive to noise early in the morning. It’s more than mere noise – I am just very sensitive in the morning, In an ideal world, I would spend two hours to raise myself to fully functioning adulthood. I would be gently awoken by the tweeting birds, and would slowly open my eyes. I would waft to the kitchen for a cup of coffee, which I would drink while splayed out like a sack of meal on the sofa, while contemplating the day ahead. A hearty breakfast would be followed by a fifteen minute snooze. At which point I would enjoy a nice refreshing shower, before departing my house, to greet the world with a sunny smile and an optimistic greeting of ‘Good morning Baltimore.’ Continue reading From Sarah with love

Eurovision: The Linda Martin years


The Eurovision Song Contest takes place in Lisbon this coming Saturday. Ireland is sending a heterosexual singer called Ryan O’Shaughnessy, who loves to talk about his girlfriend Ailbhe. His song ‘Together’ tells a gay love story, with the video to match. Apparently Russia is considering a broadcast ban on the song for breaching its gay propaganda law. You’d think they’d be more concerned with the fake re-election of Putin. Then again, what do I know? Continue reading Eurovision: The Linda Martin years